9 Things My Thyroid Told Me Not to Do


For the majority of my life I thought I was lazy, and I wasn’t the only one. I was told this to my face, and behind my back. Various words were used such as selfish, immature,  underachiever – but they all stemmed from this concept of laziness.

When I received a diagnosis of hypothyroidism in my early 30s, it was like a light went on, and I could actually see the real me. Even with treatment, it didn’t make my inability to do everything I’d like to go away, but it helped me to understand my lethargy wasn’t a faulty personality trait. It also helped me to see that others perception of me didn’t matter, and that I too could be less judgmental.

I find at times it helps to personify my illness, to separate it out from who I am. To tell myself I am doing something that could be considered “lazy” not because I am, but my thyroid needs me to help it out. My little butterfly shaped Jimminy Cricket, who lives not on my shoulder but in my throat, and that acts not as a conscious but as an internal motivator – or lack thereof. What can I say? I have an odd but delightful sense of humor.

It is in that spirit I present to you, my list of things I haven’t done because of my thyroid.

1. Laundry. My thyroid told me it had a really long day. It would take too much energy to sort, load, unload, and fold said laundry. I’m recommended a spritz of air freshener.

2. Dishes. My thyroid spent too much time on it’s feet today – it’s legs and hips are hurting. Use a Tupperware container in place of a bowl, if need be.

3. Washed my hair. My thyroid conceded a shower was acceptable, but that hair washing would use up too much time that should be spent in bed. Reach for the dry shampoo.

4. Returned a call, email, text. My thyroid claims it does not have the mental clarity to currently respond. An emoji response might be reasonable.

5. Left the house. My thyroid looked into the approximately 26 steps required to do so, and concluded it could only do the first four. Leaving the house without pants not recommended, please try again at a later time.

6. Finished a book. My thyroid told me it wants to be entertained right now, not in two hours when the book might get good but concentration is lost. Look into the movie adaptation, and utilize your libraries online renewal system.

7. Changed a burned out lightbulb. My thyroid claims no one does this immediately. I’m inclined to agree, but curious about the two month time frame.

8. Filled out that form. My thyroid has a headache and needs to close its eyes, not look at letters and numbers. It’s proposed I take two aspirin and fill the forms out in the morning.

9. Finished this list to at least 10 points. My thyroid claims my list is now long enough, the point as been made. I agree.

On average I have a lot more energy now than I used to. Yet, even with proper medication and support, thyroid disease is a tricky illness. There will still be ups and downs for a vast amount of reasons, including needing a dose adjustment that can take significant time to adjust to. I often turn to humor and sarcasm as a form of coping, and it works for me. In the end the point I truly want to make is that you are not lazy, even if your illness is. And even so, it’s not nice to call it that – my thyroid told me so.

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